Yoga to nurture; a 45 minute practice
There is joy in being wise and just,
But above all there is the beautiful,
The immense happiness of serving.
Extract from Gabriella Mistral; The Pleasure of Serving
Pause for Winter well-being
The above extract is taken from Gabriella Mistral’s poem ‘The pleasure of serving’. It begins with ‘All of nature is yearning for service’ from the clouds, to the trees, to the rocks in the field. It is important for us to serve our environments well, both our external and our internal ones. It’s not difficult and yet it seems to be the hardest thing for us to do as individuals, to take care of our well-being, our heart-ache and our difficulties. More often than not the easiest thing is to to bury them deep within us or hide away.
Something that I have learned over the years is that if I don’t meet my own needs and serve myself well, then it is harder for me to be in a place that serves others well. I once attended a workshop with yoga teacher Sylviane Gianina and I always remember her quote “Have your needs met, so that you’re not needy of others…” This has stayed with me after we spent two days exploring trees and connecting to nature in ways I hadn’t explored before for myself. Who knew trees could tell me so much about myself?
And so here we find ourselves coming to the end of 2020 and with a pandemic still lingering over us, in many ways this has been the best year for us to serve our own needs, for us to truly recognise what is important to us and for us to be able to share compassion with others when it has been needed most. And yet, there is still so much division. The division starts on the inside and works its way out. If we can connect and nurture ourselves more fully, enabling ourselves along the way then those parts that are divided within us will start to connect, heal and our outlook may change culturally and sociologically.
Can you serve yourself well and go on to serve nature all around you? Think about it for a few seconds. Pausing for winter-wellbeing allows us to do just that, to listen and to nurture ourselves and our responses in a compassionate way. You can start a compassionate inquiry on your yoga mat, but the real work is to take it with you when you step off it.
Bringing you ‘Yoga to nurture well’ – a 45 minute practice
As part of my Yoga for Winter Well-being series I share with you a practice designed to nurture-you-well. This was inspired by my recent participation in the Kendal Mountain Festival where I taught a live practice to their online audience as part of their #NurtureWell campaign. The response to this campaign has been greatly received and I thought it may be nice to share this practice with you on here including a few changes for my YouTube channel.
In this 45 minute session I bring you a compassionate and creative inquiry into how we may wish to serve and nurture ourselves well through a holistic practice. We start in a lying restful position, connecting us to our breathing and the ground, welcoming its warmth and replenishing qualities. As we begin to let go of tensions we rise slowly and gradually into focused balances and energising postures. The practice ends with a meditation on kindness.
This session includes postures designed to strengthen and mobilise your back whilst maintaining a deeper awareness of your core. I ask that you be kind to yourself as you go, notice the shifts as they arise and allow yourself plenty of time to absorb the effects of the practice, you may like to rest onto your backs after the closing meditation and switch off the video. In order to truly serve and nurture yourselves well think of this as an invitation, working within your own range of movement and capabilities. Explore when you feel ready to, avoid pushing or pulling in anyway.
Have whatever props you usually use to hand in order for this to be a truly nurturing and enjoyable experience.
New podcast coming soon
Look out in 2021 for my new meditation and relaxation podcast. I’ll be releasing details of how you can subscribe once I have everything up and running but have been recording short meditation and relaxation practices for you to enjoy and tune into as and when you can. Each practice will include a guided meditation or relaxation around a certain theme such as kindness, joyfulness or breath awareness. They vary between 5 and 10 minutes long so you can fit them into your daily life easily and I hope that they will inspire you in some way.
My YouTube channel is now host to a whole range of yoga practices including short breath-awareness techniques through to longer energising practices. There are sessions which focus upon the core, back pain and relaxation. So, please do have a look around and see what you are drawn to. I will be recording some new practices to add to the collection over the coming month. You’ll also find the Well-being sessions which combine a series of meaningful conversations that I had with fellow creative and wellness practitioners during lockdown part 1. These conversations were so much fun for me and gave me a taste of presenting live in a different way. I am not sure when they will resume but for now am very proud of this body of work.
If you haven’t done so already and would like to practice yoga online with me, you can find my full current schedule on my website which will draw to a close over the Christmas holidays. A new time-table will be released in time to welcome in the newness of 2021. You can also sign up to my mailing list, connect with me on facebook and on instagram too.
Thanks as always for your support, enjoy your festive season wherever possible and I look forward to touching base with you soon XX